West Stormont Woodland Group

West Stormont
Woodland Group

Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation (SCIO) SC051682

Join us today to bring Taymount Wood and Five Mile Wood into community ownership

Community Monthly Update – June 2024

Our main focus this month has been collaboration with all sorts of people and organisations in our ongoing programme of events in Taymount Wood and outreach activity for the WSWG Project. Each and every event has been a source of real joy at seeing so many people benefitting in so many ways from spending and sharing time in our lovely woodlands on a diverse range of activities. Whilst we cannot claim to have beaten the record set in 2019 for our oldest participant at a WSWG event (she was an amazing 96 years old!), at only 5 weeks old a little treasure beat the record of our youngest attendee to date by a whole 11 weeks! How cool is that? Read on to find out more about these wonderful, moving and uplifting events.

Biscuit solving the muddy access issue for us! 

What has WSWG been doing this month?

On 5 June, we had a fantastic day in Taymount Wood with the Nursery and P1/2 classes from the Royal School of Dunkeld. Biscuit of Wee Adventures was the star attraction for children and adults alike, so thank you, Biscuit! Knots were tied to make spiders webs; a temporary bridge for rabbits and hedgehogs was built across a ditch for the day; woodland art was created all over the place using natural materials gathered in the wood; a scavenger hunt had everyone searching for colourful pebbles, feathers, things that fly, different coloured flowers, things in nature which grow bigger than us and Wizzy-Owls hidden along the route, watching from shrubs and trees and stiles. Two Wizzy-Owls even flew off to live at Royal School of Dunkeld to remind all the children of their lovely day out at Taymount Wood. The children were all wonderful and so well-behaved and we are hoping very much they will come back again soon with their friends, family and class-mates. Thank you also to the 7 WSWG volunteers as well as the parents and teachers who helped make the day such a great success. (Hopefully more photos of this event in the July Update.)

Wizzy-Owls waiting for children from the Royal School of Dunkeld to arrive at Taymount Wood

On 8 June, as part of the Tayside Biodiversity Festival celebrating 25 years of the Tayside Biodiversity Partnership, WSWG had a stall at the Nature Market at the Civic Hall in Perth. We were showcasing both the wonderful existing wildlife in Taymount and Five Mile Woods and the potential for massive increase in biodiversity which WSWG’s Woodland Management Plans are designed to bring in future. What a fantastic range of people and organisations were there with displays and activities and what an enthusiastic buzz from loads of visiting members of the public. There is so much inspiring action going on for nature in Perth & Kinross. A big thank you to WSWG member, Jo, for doing a volunteer stint on the stall along with two of our trustees. Have a look here to find out who were all at the market. Nature Market 2024 (pkclimateaction.co.uk)

Due to a super-busy May, the WizzyWARP24 Recovery May event was postponed to 12 June. We had a fantastic day for our very special visitors from the local Recovery Cafés organised with P&K Health and Social Care Partnership and 5 WSWG volunteers on the day. Our inaugural go at Species Bingo, devised specially for us by Nicole, went down a treat as a fun opener to the day, with a wildflower seed bomb the chosen prize for the winner. A delicious picnic was provided by Alison’s Kitchen of Blairgowrie. After lunch we split into two groups, one going off up the forest track on a birdsong walk led by Gus (a big thank you for doing that for us), the other enjoying a creative and leisurely social round the woodland craft table. We then had a very informative training session in the sun from the Hillcrest Group’s community team on Naloxone emergency treatment for opiate overdose as part of Scotland’s drug death reduction strategy. Rounding up the day was a pop-up Climate Café with Len Seal from the Blairgowrie Climate Café and the HEAT Project. The last of our beautiful WSWG Wildflowers and Friends 2024 calendars and plants from our plant table were given out as reminders of this lovely day in Taymount Wood.

The Woodland Craft table
Pop-up Climate Cafe in the woods

On 14 June the WizzyWARP24 Birdsong and More event for our VIP guests from Vision PK including three amazing guide dogs dodged the expected downpours and had a wonderful walk in Taymount Wood before heading back to Stanley Village Hall for a delicious indoor picnic (from Alison’s Kitchen) and chat about the WSWG Project and its aims for managing the woods for nature recovery and climate action. With the weather forecast, we had feared the whole event would have to move indoors, but luckily for us, the deluge held off until the afternoon. Vision PK brought 8 people with sensory loss, 4 helper friends and family, 1 staff member and the three beautiful dogs, and with 6 WSWG volunteers we had lots of help on hand. Everybody had a really lovely time.

“It was a cracking morning! We would love to come back again” Robert

“It was very good. I enjoyed being out. I would change one thing for next time, I wish the walk was even longer. I would be happy to walk further or have more time to be in the woods” James 

“It was a great morning. Thank you very much” Rhona

A big thank you to Stanley Village Hall for helping WSWG a great deal lately by lending portable tables, providing meeting space, plus loo and weather back-up for our recent events! All very much appreciated.

Stanley Village Hall to the rescue

Word of the Month

Scavenger hunt: these are an exciting way to get children and adults exploring the natural world. They can be developed along different themes and are a great way to add fun to family walks in the woods. (Source – Woodland Trust). Thanks once more to Nicole for designing our WSWG Scavenger Hunt which we are loving using at different events.

What’s coming up next?

More WizzyWARP24 and other events for the coming months are being developed at present for specially invited groups as well as WSWG members and the wider community. More info and volunteer appeals soon!



Previous Articles

Community Monthly Update – May 2024

We are really delighted this month to start with the announcement that the winner of the WSWG April Photography Competition in the Children’s category is Dougie from Highland Perthshire. His stunning and clever photograph was taken at the head of Loch Rannoch, looking west, on Saturday 20 April. Such a beautiful, calm scene in our precious Perthshire countryside, but just look at the perfect capture of the beautiful splash effect at its heart. A truly super photo.

Congratulations, Dougie. Thank you very much for taking part in this competition and your well-deserved prize will be making its way to you very soon.

Read More »

Community Monthly Update – April 2024

On Sunday 14 April, a lovely bunch of people turned out for a WSWG Guided Climate and Biodiversity Walk in Taymount Wood to celebrate the start of the new Perth & Kinross Climate Action Hub (PKCAH) for which funding has been secured from the Scottish Government.

Read More »

Community Monthly Update – March 2024

It is a disappointing thing to have to do, but a surprisingly rewarding thing to have done. We are talking about picking up someone else’s litter. We all know Taymount Wood car park occasionally suffers from fly tipping, but it is regular littering which is more of a chronic problem, clogging the ditches, being strewn around the verges, blown into the brambles and nettles, overgrown by rank grass, buried in the soil, or crushed by vehicles if not removed regularly.

Read More »

Community Monthly Update – February 2024

First up this month, a big thank you to the Community Payback Team from Westbank in Perth who very kindly made an impromptu stop when passing to remove the worst of some fly tipping they spotted in the Taymount Wood car park in January. A heap of black bin-bags full of spent growing medium and general rubbish had been dumped near the entrance gate a few days earlier. They were unable to clear it all up in one go but are going to come back to complete the task for us. Moreover, they have offered to keep a watching eye on the site in future and clear up what they can. That will be such a help.

Read More »

Community Monthly Update – January 2024

Unusually, we’re starting this Monthly Update with a “What’s Coming Up Next” item! This message is principally for people in the Stanley and District community but we’d love to suggest all villages in the West Stormont area follow suit with their own aim of becoming a Biodiversity Village.

Read More »

Community Monthly Update – December 2023

It’s another year end and this time WSWG member Françoise from Stanley has created an exquisite 2024 calendar of “Wildflowers and Friends” she photographed in Taymount Wood this year to help raise funds for WSWG. Having gone for a print run of 50, these gorgeous calendars are available on a first-come, first-served basis for a donation of £10 (or a bit more if you wish!) with net proceeds going towards the purchase of the woods.

Read More »